Well fuck. I’m back into Skyrim and now I have no life. I wish I could say I’m advancing through the plot, but the truth is that the game plays into my deep seated magpie mentality. I’m all oh, I guess I should find this horn thing to help save the continent and then something shiny comes across my path. I realise that I’ve got a bit of ground to cover, so I go to get a horse. But it always seems to be night time, preventing me from buying one. Then I spend 15 minutes trying various ways to steal a horse (when I have more than enough to pay for it), including freezing the stableman solid and taking it out from underneath his frozen snout. But then I get a bounty and I’m forced to immolate a bunch of policemen and it all goes to shit. After a while I just decide to wait it out, but then in doing so I talk to some dude who tells me that giants have been seen in a certain mountain pass. OF COURSE I WANT TO GO OUT AND KILL A FUCKING GIANT, but by the time I get my horse I forget where he told me to stay clear of (this map is fucking expansive).
It’s all for the greater good, because it allows me to narrow down my plans and get back on course. BUT THEN I FIND A VAMPIRE LAIR. Why wouldn’t I want to raid that? They could have flashy spellbooks and cool vampire-y trinkets. Maybe I’ll find some special plants to harvest for alchemy. So of course I go down and leave a trail of bodies. Then when I’m looting someone’s room I discover an alchemy table and spend another 10 minutes making potions out of toadstools, troll fat and butterfly wings. I think to myself wait, aren’t I in a fucking vampire lair? What the hell is a vampire gonna think if they see some cloaked, masked figure grinding down daisies and shit? I leave the table and torch the place. I realise I’m right next to my quest spot, so I kill a ton of spiders, avoid traps and get to the horn. But some dick has stolen it and taken it to Riverwood, so now I have to go to the middle of the fucking continent. I travel, but looking on the map I realise I’m right next to that mountain pass with the giants. So the next half hour of my life is spent making traps for this giant and his mammoth companion while I flee in terror and my horse tramples a bunch of uppity wolves. Seriously, horses in this game trample the shit out of errand wild dogs. I look up and realise it’s 1.30am.
Are there people who live life like I play Skyrim? Ridiculously whimsical folks who follow their glee with every step? Instead of living the capitalist dream we’ve all been driven towards, they wander about conversing with strangers and having adventures? They just wake up in the morning, pick wild berries off a vine and stroll about town. They find some old bread from out behind a dumpster, then Hansel and Gretel a flock of pigeons into a trap made of flax and branches. They pluck the birds and sell the feathers to an artisan jeweller and train the now naked pigeons to jump through hoola hoops. They then busk through the local bohemian area and sell their act to an enterprising capitalist for 10% of merchandising. Using their busking income, they buy bowls, cutlery and oats for the homeless in the area, with prep instructions and the advice to go into a coffee store and ask for boiling water. Then, dancing streetside to the stereos of cars idling at traffic lights, they get invited to party with a group of affable college kids. They get really drunk on brass monkeys, play Never Have I Ever and go off to KILL A FUCKING GIANT.
Life, it’s what you make of it.