Tuesday, April 29, 2008

The Dating Game

Poor, neglected Sims blog! It seems like forever since I last posted, and let me tell you, it's been bugging me. My wife is partly to blame, having gotten me interested in photography not too long ago. I've spent a lot of time taking photos, and what little time I had during breaks at work when I used to work on sims posts, I spent posting photos instead (sort of the same thing, but with a lot less story telling). The other day, I started working on this most recent post, and I have to admit, the thing that inspired me to finish it was having read the comment on the last post. I hope to start posting again regularly, as I never intended to just stop and vanish off the face of the earth this time. =P

Last time we checked in on the Jacksons, Moon Dawg had realized his dream of a legitimate gnome-selling business, granting the family something resembling an actual income (granted, the current Jackson family has so much money they don't actually need it, but never mind that). As if that wasn't exciting enough, Steve Johnston (formerly Steve Jackson before unique last names were available) came looking for his old pals, Leon and Moon Dawg. Last we saw, he was living at Pimp Harbor, not on the boat, but in a little shack on a dock on the edge of the property. The shack was no house boat, but Steve wasn't paying to live there, so the price was right. He spent most of his time on the boat deck anyway dancing to salsa music and sharing drinks with his old buddies.

Kerrie: "I thought I heard someone getting sloshed up here!"

Having Steve back in the "family" helped bring back the good old days for Leon and Moon Dawg, and Leon was especially glad to have him around, because compared to Steve, Leon always looked like less of a loser than he actually was. I mean, come on - Steve's wife cheated on him, he died in a barbecue fire, came back as a zombie, then got sprayed by a skunk…do we really need any more reasons here? Obviously, things weren't exactly like the old days, because instead of an ugly retro house, there's an ugly retro boat, and instead of Steve being the only one who's married, Steve is the only one who's NOT married, but the easy going, fun loving atmosphere remained the same. At some point, Moon Dawg decided that if he was going to be a huge success in the gnome business, he needed to convey the proper image, and he couldn't do that if he had to go to work every day in a dirty old taxi. Thus, another dock was constructed, and Moon Dawg purchased a fly ride of his own…

Moon Dawg: "Now all we need is a piña colada air freshener, mon!"

Yes, by this point, almost everyone else in town owned one form of vehicle or the other, unless there wasn't room on their property for a driveway, it only seemed fitting for a cool cat like Moon Dawg to jump on that wagon and buy a "wagon" of his own. That, and Moon Unit missed the school bus, and the only way to get her to school before it was too late was to hurriedly construct a driveway, buy a car, and drive here there (if only it were that easy to solve problems in real life). Yes, it's definitely been a while since we last visited the Jacksons, because last time, Moon Unit was still this little green thing wobbling around and learning to walk. Now, she's a school going green kid, who's not showing a lot of alien intelligence with her "C" average in school. Hey, it's not easy being green!

Moon Unit: "Man, those kids on the bus are a bunch of weirdoes!"

Despite the joys of living on a boat with his two old pals, their wives, an alien, and unlimited entertainment and money resources, Steve found himself wanting something more. He'd grown accustomed to the idea of being attached to someone else (in the figurative sense, not physically), and being without Doris was starting to bum him out. Steve didn't have a lot of interest in getting out and hitting the clubs by himself, and Moon Dawg and Leon were content to stay on the boat almost all of the time (Moon Dawg because he had a wife and kid, Leon because he had a wife and lots of people around town who would love to punch his face in). Steve quickly realized the only way he was going to meet any women was through the dating service (we all know how well it's worked for everyone else in the neighborhood who tried it).

Steve: "I'll settle for pretty much any woman, as long as it's not you!"

Well, it's been my experience that in the world of TS2, giving the match maker a lot of money does not always guarantee a better match than you get for a little money, so Steve's contribution was moderate, but by no means significant. His resulting date was Ivy Hartman, one of the many female Hartman plant sims from around town. If I recall correctly, Tommy Wolf wound up getting one of the Hartmans for his blind date, and it's happened on a couple of other occasions with sims I didn't bother to cover. The plant sim Hartmans are many, and it would save a lot of money for folks around town to just head down to the Hartman Garden Center to look for a date instead of shelling out thousands of dollars to the match maker to get the same result. Steve didn't seem to care, though…after all, it wasn't his money he was wasting.

Ivy: "He's my date? I need to plan an escape route out of here!"

If you can recall that far back, Steve never actually had to woo Doris to get her to marry him, she fell completely and madly in love with him because of a love potion he mixed with his chemistry set (the same potion later caused her to fall in love with Leon as well). Thus, Steve really had no concept of what it took to gain the interest of a woman without potions, and it showed. Heck, I don't remember him ever really having any interaction with females when he lived in the original Jackson house, probably because Leon scooped most of them up before they could get very far into the house. He did know one thing from experience on the boat, and that's that Keri and Kerrie liked to hang out on the deck and have drinks, so he assumed maybe Ivy would feel the same way. Not great logic, but not entirely flawed either.

Ivy: "This would be even more fun if I wasn't suffering from sunlight deprivation…!"

Well, Ivy did seem to be enjoying hanging out at the bar with the residents of the boat, although she spent just as much time talking to everyone else as she did Steve. There's a big difference between a successful date and a fun casual outing, and Ivy's visit was starting to look more and more like the latter. Steve just wasn't getting it, though, perhaps because he was too afraid he'd screw things up if he made any overt expressions of his attraction for Ivy, if, indeed, he was attracted to her to begin with. If he was, at least someone was feeling something, because when it came time for the date to end, Ivy was less than receptive to the idea of a goodbye hug.

Moon Dawg: "Wow, mon, you got dissed bad! Sucks to be you!"

Yes, Moon Dawg looks a little too amused at Steve's bad fortune in that picture. I know he's all about happiness and everything being good all the time, but let's face it, sometimes, that over-cheery attitude just makes things worse for people who aren't feeling so cheery. Despite the late hour, and the shame of his less than stellar date, Steve wasn't even close to giving up yet. Since there wasn't time to go out and find a woman the traditional way, and since Steve had not yet learned his lesson about the matchmaker, he called her up again and decided to try his luck once again. This time, he shelled out about two thirds of the possible donation he could give to the matchmaker, in the hopes of getting someone a little more interested in him.

Steve: "How about someone who doesn't have leaves for hair?"

This time, Steve's date was one of the bartenders from around town, and I was too lazy to pay attention to her name, so we'll just call her Steve's date for the sake of simplicity. Anyway, Steve already got off to a better start with his new date than with Ivy, as she seemed to have more interests in common with him than Ivy had, and spent a lot less time putting her fingers in her ears during their conversations. Steve took this as a good sign, and decided to take things to the next level…the lower level. There wasn't a whole heck of a lot to do topside besides drink and dance, and everyone else had retired to the card table and bowling alley. Oddly, Ivy had decided to hang around after the date and play some cards and watch on the sidelines as Steve tried to do his thing. Talk about adding insult to injury. Actually, though, Steve wasn't doing too badly for himself…

Steve: "I learned this from watching 'The Karate Kid'..."

The rest of the gang didn't seem to mind Ivy's presence, mainly because she represented another person at the poker table, and winning money from her actually meant gaining some money, unlike the family members winning it from each other. Given the fact that most of the time, all four seats at the table were usually occupied by residents of the boat, playing poker wasn't usually a very profitable venture (unlike at Katrina and Mia Kay Wilson's house). Well, in addition to not being a great match for Steve, Ivy also seemed to be lacking in the tact department, as she started expressing her dislike for aliens. Surely she must have noticed Moon Unit, since she's looking right at her in the picture (maybe that's what brought on the comment in the first place).

Ivy: "I just don't like their green skin, it's weird!"

Yes, I don't think there's any further need to touch on the hypocrisy of Ivy disliking other "unusual" sims. Anyway, back to Steve. At some point, his second date ended, and he at least got a hug out of the deal (no lip action to speak of, though). His date left promptly after the timer was up, unlike Ivy, who was STILL hanging around even by this point. Steve decided there was no sense in trying for a third date (ignoring the tried and true wisdom of how the third time is a charm), and decided it might be a good time to get to know the rest of the "family" a little bit better. He already knew Leon and Moon Dawg as well as he could possibly hope to, but hadn't built much of a relationship with the girls or Moon Unit yet. He decided to join them for a few frames of bowling to correct that.

Moon Unit: "I just hope you bowl better than you date! Hee hee."

Yes, while Steve's second date didn't end as embarrassingly as his first did, it was still a little humiliating that things didn't go better, especially when Steve started comparing himself to Leon, who was once known for his ability to successfully pick up women and get them to fall in love with him in the time it takes most folks to ask a girl her name. Steve decided if he was going to compete at something, it might as well be something he stood a chance at, like bowling. Unfortunately, Steve didn't have a whole lot in the way of body points, and the lack thereof had a noticeable affect on his bowling form *snicker*. He did manage to bowl a few strikes, but his approach on those shots usually sent him flying down the lane as well. Oh, well…whatever it takes to make it happen I guess.

Leon: "Talk about your big time flops! Of course, I'm referring to your dates, not your bowling..."

Yes, Steve seems to be filling the exact same role he filled back in the days of the original Jackson family - the loveable loser who's not quite as cool as Leon and not quite as carefree and fun loving as Moon Dawg. Every family needs one. At least he's not messing around with chemistry sets anymore trying to achieve those goals. Anyway, we'll take a break from the Jacksons for the time being, and next time, we'll see just what Tommy and Allyn Wolf are up to these days (Allyn had just given birth to their son, Allen, when we last checked in on them). I'm hoping to post more frequently in coming days than I have been recently, I never expected to be able to do it daily like I was, but several weeks in between posts is a little longer than I like too, I'd like to find the happy medium. Until next time, everyone take care!


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