A couple of days ago, my wife and I went to the Half Price Books store in Tukwila, WA, after having lunch with family and friends. I've been rather lucky at finding great deals on out-of-print games and rules supplements during such forays. On this day, I stumbled across a wrapped box of Striker for $35.
But as it turned out, my luck had run out. It wasn't until we got home that I opened the box, only to discover it didn't contain any of the Striker booklets, but Books 1 and 3 of the Traveller role playing game (RPG)...
...along with the rulebook for the game Snapshot.
Someone pulled a fast one.
Here's what should have been in the box...
While I was mentally kicking myself for not opening the game before I left the premises (or asked the cashier before I even bought it), I double-checked the price tag to see if I misread it. Nope. The label stated that the box contained "Rules for 15mm miniatures," instead of something like, "assorted Traveller booklets."
I called right away. Fortunately, I talked to someone who was familiar with Striker and was assured I could return the box for a full refund.
I had the desperate urge to zip back to Tukwila right away. However, it was late afternoon and the highways and byways of the I-5 Corridor were already choked with traffic. So any "zipping" would have to wait until the next day.
There was only one problem--two actually: I had appointments with both my chiropractor and my primary care physician, at two different locales, of course.
After my morning workout, I rushed home, grabbed some breakfast to go, along with a mega-sized mocha my wife brewed for me and drove
Hell for leather the posted speed limit up to Tukwila. I arrived several minutes after the store opened. In addition to the game I was returning, I brought along a bunch of DVDs my wife and I were getting rid of as part of our home consolidation process.
Enter the plot twist...
As I was dropping off my DVDs for appraisal, the cashier asked to see my drivers license.
Upon presenting it to him, he declared, "I can't accept that. Your license expired last week."
(Okay, I should have known that my license was about to expire. But in my defense, I rarely use it and rely instead on my military ID. Also, the last time I renewed it the Department of Licensing sent me an e-mail notification and I was able to complete the renewal process on-line).
Despite getting my refund, I was now in a bigger predicament than being gipped out of $35. I
raced drove the posted speed limit to my chiropractor's office with 10 minutes to spare--only to languish for another 25 minutes in his waiting room.
By now I had less than an hour between appointments, so I
sped drove the posted speed limit to a licensing place near where we live--to discover they only do plates and tags. Once I got directions to the Department of Licensing (DOL), I was off on another wild leisurely ride.
Of course, when I arrived at the DOL, I was confronted by the usual mob scene. When I got my number, I asked the teller how long was the wait. When he said "an hour," I looked at my watch. I only had 30 minutes to get to my medical appointment.
I came back after my doctor's appointment and waited over an hour to be seen. The folks working at the DOL were actually pleasant and I was told that Mondays were the worst days, by far, to conduct any business there.
In the end, I managed to get my license renewed--and not get a speeding ticket in the process. But jeez, it was a long, long day.
(What a complete game of Snapshot should look like)