GCL Gelato 176 - Recorded Plays
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What is a Geek Chat League?

A Geek Chat League is a weekly discussion-group format for people who love gaming and enjoy talking about games. It is intended to foster depth and familiarity, producing engaging content and worthwhile interaction. Members get to know one another, establish shared interests, and generally develop a friendly and productive environment.

Of necessity, each division of GCL is kept relatively small (typically between 12-16 members, though individual divisions may incline one way or the other). A tight-knit discussion group tends to function more smoothly than a free-for-all. It allows individuals to be heard and understood, and for each participant to keep up and enjoy multiple topics as the week progresses. The format is geeklist-based, and lists are not published to the BGG front page.

Policy: If you're a lurker or have otherwise discovered GCL Gelato, feel free to read along with us and see what the members have to say on everything under the sun. If you have a constructive comment or something else you think would add to the discussion, consider posting it — if it's helpful, respectful, and polite to the discussion group as a whole, as well as to its individual members.

This week:
Recorded Plays

The Coach:

leroy 43 (Roger)

The Players:

ad79 (Stig)
alex352 (Alex)
cmontgo2 (Chris)
Cole Wehrle (Cole)
cscottk (Skippen)
eapeas (Edward & Amanda)***

Farsol (Patrick)
Jacovis (Jacob)
jtakagi (jonathan)
Lil Red Head (Nikki)
Neil Thomson (Neil)
oeolycus (Dan)
PzVIE (Ron)
tommynomad (T. Nomad)
wifwendell (Wendell)


*** = Next Week
Next up Edward!

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1. Board Game: Fowl Play! [Average Rating:6.13 Overall Rank:8106]
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This week we will explore each you again. Each of you will has an entry with your most played game. Tell us, why is this your most played game? What intrigues you? Why should we play it? Maybe why this game is not for everybody? Is there a game that you have played more that you haven't listed?
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2. Board Game: Scrabble [Average Rating:6.28 Overall Rank:1759] [Average Rating:6.28 Unranked]
Board Game: Scrabble
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Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
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Roger has 384 recorded plays of Scrabble.
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3. Board Game: Star Realms [Average Rating:7.59 Overall Rank:111] [Average Rating:7.59 Unranked]
Board Game: Star Realms
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Stig has 55 recorded plays of Star Realms.
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4. Board Game: Chess [Average Rating:7.11 Overall Rank:452] [Average Rating:7.11 Unranked]
Board Game: Chess
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Chris has 101 recorded plays of Chess.
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5. Board Game: Go [Average Rating:7.64 Overall Rank:162]
Board Game: Go
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Cole has 101 recorded plays of Go.
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6. Board Game: Advanced Squad Leader [Average Rating:7.98 Overall Rank:297] [Average Rating:7.98 Unranked]
Board Game: Advanced Squad Leader
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Scott has 104 recorded plays of Advanced Squad Leader.
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7. Board Game: Dominant Species [Average Rating:7.85 Overall Rank:58]
Board Game: Dominant Species
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Edward has 13 recorded plays of Dominant Species.
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8. Board Game: Tichu [Average Rating:7.58 Overall Rank:158]
Board Game: Tichu
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Patrick has 77 recorded plays of Tichu.
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9. Board Game: Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game [Average Rating:7.59 Overall Rank:164] [Average Rating:7.59 Unranked]
Board Game: Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game
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Jacob has 162 recorded plays of Legendary.
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10. Board Game: Loopin' Louie [Average Rating:6.79 Overall Rank:875]
Board Game: Loopin' Louie
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Jonathan has 501 recorded plays of Loopin' Louie.
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11. Board Game: Space Alert [Average Rating:7.45 Overall Rank:208]
Board Game: Space Alert
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Nikki has 35 recorded plays of Space Alert.
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12. Board Game: Powerboats [Average Rating:6.72 Overall Rank:1699]
Board Game: Powerboats
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Neil has 1,623 recorded plays of Powerboats.
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13. Board Game: Mr. Jack [Average Rating:7.02 Overall Rank:515]
Board Game: Mr. Jack
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Dan has 193 recorded plays of Mr. Jack.
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14. Board Game: Advanced Squad Leader [Average Rating:7.98 Overall Rank:297] [Average Rating:7.98 Unranked]
Board Game: Advanced Squad Leader
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Ron has 460 recorded plays of Advanced Squad Leader.
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15. Board Game: San Juan [Average Rating:7.26 Overall Rank:278]
Board Game: San Juan
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Tommy has 115 recorded plays of San Juan.
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16. Board Game: World in Flames [Average Rating:7.59 Overall Rank:1202] [Average Rating:7.59 Unranked]
Board Game: World in Flames
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Wendell has 235 recorded plays of World in Flames.
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17. RPG Item: The End of the World: Wrath of the Gods [Average Rating:7.54 Overall Rank:3246]
RPG Item: The End of the World: Wrath of the Gods
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So, in the end, what does this say about each of us? Anything? Nothing?
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18. Board Game: Jumping to Conclusions [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
Board Game: Jumping to Conclusions
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In the end, I found this interesting. I expected to see different games from a few of you, others I was not surprised, and others of you, I am astounded at the number plays that you have of some game.

I hope you found this of interest. Now, discuss!
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19. Board Game: Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game [Average Rating:7.59 Overall Rank:164] [Average Rating:7.59 Unranked]
Board Game: Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game
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Howdy everyone!

This week was pretty uneventful until yesterday, but here goes

I got a job interview next week (week of Septembre 7th) for a position as a tutor for the VA for veterans attending college. The nice thing would be, of course, that if I get that it won't interfere with my completion of my teaching licensing, etc. and I will get to help veterans, something close to my heart, as well as make some money. I look forward to that and will let everyone know how that goes.

My sister and her husband are thinking about flying me up to visit them back in Idaho for a couple of days, since I have the time right now so that will be fun. I taught my sister Twilight Struggle via Vassal a couple of years ago and we've played many times since. I also purchased for her the digital edition via the kickstarter, so we can't wait to play with the new game when it comes out. At any rate, we look forward to our first face to face game of TS.

Yesterday my buddy came back into town for a couple of days and we had a gaming, eating extravaganza. My group met back in 2003-2004 playing Legend of the Five Rings, and we played many other games (ccg, board, rpg, whatever) for the next several years and we've been gaming ever since. This one buddy moved to Arizona, so we don't see him that often, others have been added to the group over the years, and some have fallen off, but it's nice to have gaming buddies that go back that long and who we can just get together after any amount of time and have fun playing again.

I got in a few plays yesterday (I also had to go get my eye glass appointment for me and my son since I had already paid my company's insurance until the end of the month before I got let go).

3 x Castle Dice - This game is ridiculous, stupid, and fun as hell for reasons beyond my ability to explain. I'll play it any time.

2 x Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game and Dark City. One of the guys had only played twice, the other is a buddy I've played with a bit, and the other guy had played a few times. They insisted on random, so we pulled Mephisto and Midtown Bank Robbery... we got slaughtered. Four players an five players can be tough anyway, but you add Mephisto who adds wounds to the top of your deck instead of to your discard pile and a scheme that adds bystanders to the lineup and then you lose when there are 8 that get carried away by villains, and yeah.. ouch :/

At any rate, it was a blast. Legendary is a game I can play 30 times, losing every time, and still enjoy tremendously. This goes for all of its variations. (I've warmed up to Aliens and Predator, and I'm looking forward to the Big Trouble in Little China and Firefly versions!)

I hope everyone has a great week!
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20. Board Game: Churchill [Average Rating:7.68 Overall Rank:568]
Board Game: Churchill
Wendell
United States
Yellow Springs
Ohio
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Had my first play of Churchill since it was published. Also first time I'd played with the "three conditions" victory rules. I was Churchill and jumped out to an illusory early lead, nearly always a mistake in a three-player game. Initially, Tom's Soviets lagged as Churchill and Bob's FDR grabbed a lot of countries and colonies. D-Day was delayed a turn, not by contention in the conference but due to bad dice. (That also meant I earned the UK VP for reaching Central Italy before the Allies were in Normandy.)

The Western Allies eventually got to the western borders of Germany but (despite one two-space breakthru) couldn't get in. That meant Tom's Soviets, which took Berlin in 1945, gained a 9 VP-swing over US/UK (3 for getting 8 points for Germany vs 5 for Western Germany, +5 for sole occupation of Germany, +1 for German tech).

Bob's Pacific forces managed to get into Japan at the very end of the game - just as well, because the Soviets never took Manchuria and the Allies didn't figure out the a-bomb in time. But MacArthur lagged in the SW Pacific by a couple of spaces, giving the US another penalty.

Final score: Soviets 50 (including 2 conference wins), UK 43, US 40.

Great game.
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21. Family: Series: 18xx
Board Game: Steam over Holland
Ron
Austria
Vienna
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Gaming Life

 10   Advanced Squad Leader
 8   18CZ
 10   1830: Railways & Robber Barons
 6   Risk: Star Wars – The Clone Wars Edition NEW!
 8   Anno 1701: Das Kartenspiel

Thursday night is now my designated ASL night - I played another game with my Finnish partner live over VASSAL/VASL. A classic one, "Gavin Take" where a small force of Yankees tries to break through a German defense. Another great battle; at first, I was a little shocked when my defensive fire left the US boys totally unimpressed, even created fanatic squads and a hero, but JP was just a little too slow and so I was able to prevent his breakthrough until the time ran out.

Friday saw another playtest of Leonhard "Lonny" Orgler's 18CZ. He's still tinkering with a few rules, but after the game he announced that the game is now finished for 3 and 4 players. So it now goes into the test phase for 5 and probably 6 players with the risk, that we have to test some modifications with 3 and 4 again. Playtesting can be a drag!

After that we relaxed with a nice game of 1830: Railways & Robber Barons; in the end, Lonny won with a score of $11,366. I had $11,365 ... that really hurt! meeple
BTW, as this is the "recorded plays" discussion week, I want to point out that this was my 103rd playing of 1830: Railways & Robber Barons

On Sunday we had a beef brisket in the Smoker, and therefore the whole day was about watching the temperature. As we currently watch the TV show THE CLONE WARS again, Andrea and I sat down for a game of Risk: Star Wars – The Clone Wars Edition. I played the Republic and really pressed on hard on her, but she kept her cool and when she finally called out Order 66, it really looked bad for me. The Clankers pushed me back in all systems and finally the Separatists won ... I took my revenge in a game of Anno 1701: Das Kartenspiel in which Andrea was totally let down by the dice ...

Board Game: Advanced Squad Leader
Board Game: 18CZ
Board Game: 1830: Railways & Robber Barons
Board Game: Risk: Star Wars – The Clone Wars Edition
Board Game: Anno 1701: Das Kartenspiel


New Games

BGG's first minigame arrived at my doorstep - I Hate Zombies and the accompanying expansion I Hate Zombies: We Hate Zombies Too. I also ordered two packs of little plastic brains as these go along fine with my Zombie Dice game.

Board Game: I Hate Zombies
Board Game: I Hate Zombies: We Hate Zombies Too


BGG things

I got another in the Geek Citizenship Recognition - now I'm at two ... still three to go! meeple

My employer seems to have BGG partially blocked now - I can still check out games and stuff, but all images and files are blocked (imagine BGG without images ... looks kinda bland). Also, RPG Geek is no longer accessible. I guess it's just a matter of time until I can't check out the Geek too. Another sad episode in "how to motivate your employees" ... I mean I can facebook all the time, I can watch every single Youtube video, but I'm blocked out from BGG?
Sigh ... soblue

Hope you all had a great week too!
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22. Board Game: Silent Victory: U.S. Submarines in the Pacific, 1941-45 [Average Rating:8.05 Overall Rank:1982]
Board Game: Silent Victory: U.S. Submarines in the Pacific, 1941-45
Stig Morten
Norway
Kvernaland
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Board Game: Kingdom Builder
Board Game: Rallyman
Board Game: Sekigahara: The Unification of Japan
Board Game: Silent Victory: U.S. Submarines in the Pacific, 1941-45
Board Game: Star Realms


Kingdom Builder NEW!
Tried this with Ingmar. Quick and easy. Ingmar won by a single point.
Rallyman
Did the SGoYT August race.
Sekigahara: The Unification of Japan
Lost soundly as the Yellow forces. very cool game.
Silent Victory: U.S. Submarines in the Pacific, 1941-45
Finished my George W. Underwood carrer. Great fun. Session report going live tomorrow, I think.
Star Realms A 2-handed solo game. Left hand won.

Aquisitions.
PitchCar Extension and PitchCar Extension 5: The Cross which completes my Pitchcar collection.
Also got the 2nd edition of Mondo free from the online shop I bought Pitchcar from.
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23. Board Game: Barony [Average Rating:7.11 Overall Rank:1127]
Board Game: Barony
Jonathan Takagi
United States
Escondido
California
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A couple notes regarding this week's theme:

1. I've played all of everyone's most played titles except for the two wargames.

2. I always enjoy seeing how people treat their games played log on BGG. Many people are very preachy about how they should be logged. Usually this involves only logging face to face plays rather than online, or not logging both the game and its expansion. I consider it to be only useful for the user, so they might as well log how it is most useful for them. Am I a little bit bummed to not have the most plays of Nertz because someone logged 1000 plays in one day? A little, but I can see what they're doing, just adjusting for all those plays years ago.

3. I am really glad to have kept a fairly thorough log of my plays. It is very useful and a lot of fun to look up when we last played a game or what might have happened a few years back.
Board Game: Giro Galoppo
Board Game: Roll for the Galaxy
Board Game: One Night Ultimate Werewolf Daybreak
Board Game: Barony
Board Game: Spyfall
Board Game: The Resistance
Board Game: Manila


 7   Giro Galoppo - Always a good time. There aren't too many kids games with this amount of screwage, so I always enjoy playing this one.
 N/A   Roll for the Galaxy x2 - We almost never play games twice in a row, so this was a very rare occasion for us.
 9   One Night Ultimate Werewolf Daybreak x2 - One of these plays was with a large group (10 players). I was glad to try it that way so now I know it's best avoided. With so many players, the only practical thing that can happen is that people tell the truth and piece it all together. I find the game at its best with 5 or less, and if I had 10 in the future, I would encourage breaking up into 2 groups.
 N/A   Barony NEW! - A poster child for JASE. This is little more than an abstract with the traditional Matagot wildly overproduced components. The wooden pieces are huge, and very ornate. There are a ton of tiles to form the map board. I would like to try this a few more times, since it felt very strange to me. I got this on the strength of Splendor, but this is completely different and nowhere near as tight of a design.
 9   Spyfall x2 - After a few months away from the game, it was kind of refreshing to play again, though group dynamics are very strong and completely fooled us.
 9   The Resistance - I must admit that I got fairly angry after this game was over, though it was against a member of my own team.
 5   Manila - I was glad to get this one back to the table, as it is one that I've regretted trading away on occasion, due to its former rarity. I think I'm finally over it, as this one dragged on far too long for its weight.
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24. Board Game: Age of Industry [Average Rating:7.38 Overall Rank:653]
Board Game: Age of Industry
...in which AoI finally gets to the table.

After a summer hiatus, the Gents' Club reconvened, with 2 of our members requesting a new game. Since my big, Canadian, box of gaming goodness (+ Castles of Mad King Ludwig) is still in transit, I had to find something in my collection that played 5P, but was unknown to the membership. Lo, AoI revealed itself.

This week's big game ended up being a fascinating experiment in which we all (kinda) knew the mechanics of how to play the game, but none of us knew how scoring worked (or had the wrong idea about how it worked). So we played very tactically, really focusing on how to do things, without the larger strategic concerns. Final score: 27-25(me)-25-22-19. The game was great fun, with some significant snowballing in the last third and the expected ratcheting tension to match.

Over the summer our happy gang lost a member to a new job in a new city. He took with him his collection:
A Game of Thrones: The Board Game (Second Edition)
The Pillars of the Earth
Power Grid
Container
We have taken immediate steps to replace PG and Container.

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25. Board Game: Don't Tread On Me: The American Revolution Solitaire Board Game [Average Rating:7.86 Overall Rank:5844]
Board Game: Don't Tread On Me: The American Revolution Solitaire Board Game
Chris Montgomery
United States
Joliet
Illinois
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Weekend Round-Up

This past week, these games were played face-to-face:
None.

This past week, these games started:
None.

This past week (through date of posting), these games continued:
Burnside Takes Command, Scenario 2 v. Carsten (100-Game-Play Challenge!)
Stonewall Jackson's Way II, Scenario 6 v. Patrick (Advanced Game!)
GCACW: Atlanta is Ours, Scenario 2 v. Patrick (Playtest!)
The Great Invasion: Gettysburg v. Judd
1830: The Coalfields v. 5-Player (GCL Gelato!)
D-Day at Omaha Beach x 1 (In Progress; Solitaire)

This past week, these games concluded:
GCACW: Atlanta is Ours, Scenario 1 v. Scott (Playtest!)

This past week, these games/accessories were acquired:
Age of Industry
Age of Industry Expansion: Great Lakes & South Africa
Don't Tread On Me: The American Revolution Solitaire Board Game

This week, these games/acccesories are on my radar:
Victory Roads
Churchill
Mini Poker Chips (A specific kind, not the Meeple Source ones)

This past week, these interesting things happened in my games and my life:

1 ---> Game Pimping / Painting / Etc. Nothing to report. I've been too busy . . . see below.

2 ---> D-Day at Omaha Beach. Nothing to report. I've been too busy . . . see below.

3 ---> Family. Wow is three kids a lot more work than two! It will get easier when the little guy is a little older, but for now, my wife is a stalwart master of organized chaos. I go half-batty sometimes at home, but she resolutely sticks to her guns and barrels through. Most of my time at home lately is working on legal cases (below) and helping out with the household duties while my wife herds the children.

4 ---> Atlanta is Ours! I am back in a dry spell, but plan to get a file to Patrick on Thursday. But, as I have been saying, I have been too busy!

5 ---> Civil War Campaign Series. Still waiting on a turn from Judd. The game slowly oozes along, like molasses (my least favorite part of PBEM gaming and something that I have been an offender of this year more than any prior). If you've noticed, I haven't added any new PBEM games in a while, because it's just not fair to my opponents. The 18XX PBF games are great, because I can take 5-10 minutes to do my turn. These other games that require a bit of thinking, maybe a rules look up, etc., and an unknown number of turns take a bit longer. But all of it has been fun. I just wish I could do more live gaming.

6 ---> Gaming Group. Still waiting to see if I might be able to attend game night this week. We will see.

7 ---> Other On-Going Games. 1830 Coalfields continues (from my perspective) to be mostly-decided, but we have entered the final stock round, which was opened with Dan O. dropping 5 of his 6 shares of B&O on Dan Huffman! AFTER the sale, the B&O stock was at $185 (sitting on a shelf after dropping two spots)! Dan Huffman will now have to buy a "D" train when the B&O operates, which may or may not (most assuredly not, but maybe) put him within striking distance of me. This game has been really instructive to me on what *NOT* to do. At the start of the game I bought into N&W and that pretty much sealed my fate. I dumped the corp on Dan Huffman a short while later, but made the wrong decisions in how to get back up. Ever since that fateful first OR, I have been falling further and further behind, making worse decisions after bad ones. I won't lie and say it's not frustrating, but it's also fun. Trying to figure out what to do next and how to navigate this frustratingly simple, yet very complex genre of games. Now I'm at a point in the game where I'm just trying to minimize how much the gap will be between me and fourth place. :-) I realize now several things I should have been focusing on many, many, many ORs earlier, but I will have to tuck those lessons away for another game, another day. Despite all of the above, which might seem like complaining -- it's really not. I really enjoy the group we have, but I feel like I'm flailing about to keep up with the others' learning curve.

8 ---> BGG Con. The BGG Con Wargamer meet-up list was posted last evening. It's already a-buzz with games being organized. It's this day, every year, that the Con suddenly seems closer that it really is. Less than three months!

9 ---> Legal Work. *THIS* is what has been eating up all my time. I primarily practice in two areas out of my house: real estate transactions and Social Security disability. The real estate transactions are lower-paying cases that generate quick money. The Social Security cases are long, drawn out affairs that pay more over time, but they are contingent - I have to win to get paid.

The real estate pays my overhead and gives me quick cash, while the Social Security practice requires a lot of work with no immediate return. Most real estate cases are done in 14-75 days while Social Security cases are finished in 1-2 YEARS. A real estate case pays $350 gross for representing a buyer (flat fee), and about $1,200-1,500 gross for representing a seller (involving some variable fees in there). After my overhead (about $700 a month), whatever is left is taxed at roughly 50%.

Without a staff, and doing it all myself, I find myself doing the mundane tasks that eat up a lot of time without really being worth the time I spend on them: writing a letter, printing it out, signing it, photocopying it for my file, generating an envelope, putting a stamp on it, and walking it to the mailbox, for instance, takes about 30 minutes. This is usually preceded by a 5-10 minute phone call which prompts the letter. I normally have about 5 real estate cases going at any one time, which has been manageable, but for some reason, the market is hot right now, or at least a lot of people I know are selling and buying. So I currently have 10 active real estate cases -- twice as much as I am used to. These types of cases are riddled with deadlines that can't be missed, extensions to be requested, letters being sent out, documents drafted, etc. I am in that twilight zone of enough work to drive me crazy, but not enough work to make it worth hiring an employee.

On top of that, I tried to expand my Social Security practice earlier this year, and I currently have 12 active clients for that. Now, that's only 22 active cases total between both practice areas, which in the vast scheme of things is not very many. But Social Security representation is form-heavy work. Lots of forms to complete. Correspondence with the SSA takes forever, and typically when something needs to be done on a case, it takes a while, usually involving a client conference, a multiple-page form to complete, a letter, envelopes, and copies to the file and the client. Almost any task takes 60-90 minutes.

Unfortunately, the work is *also* not paying well enough to have my wife consider leaving her job - which means come November, when she returns to work, I will be doing all this work, PLUS taking care of the children during the week when she is at work, PLUS working at the fire department. We have arranged for a sitter to let me get some work done, but that cost just adds to my overhead (not included above).

Anyway - end of the rant . . . when I find myself with free time, surfing BGG and watching TV top the list of "mindless" activities that would rather be doing, which is a shame. C'mon BGG Con, c'mon.

Hopefully, before she goes back to work, the caseload will be a bit lighter and I can clear out most of the real estate work. But it seems just as I close a file, I get another phone call. Since we are underwater on our home and want to move to a slightly larger one to accommodate the family, I find it difficult to say no.

The other side of my psyche that deals with deciding how much work to take is considering how lucky I am to have two good-paying jobs and a wonderful wife - how can I complain about that? I just don't want to wake up one day and wonder where the last 30 years have gone. I have feared that my entire life, and it feels like, you know, I'm already running down that track.

I'll reassess at the start of next year and see.

Edits: None.
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