Decisions Decisions

19 Jun

So, let’s say someone – for the sake of argument, let’s call her Melissa – had three options. And a ticket to the most hotly-anticipated gaming event in Texas.

1. Be financially responsible and a good parent and stay in Melbourne with my her family.

2. Go to a conference in Boston. Which is directly relevant to my her work. And fly home with a stop in Dallas. Cost: About $5000. Some tax-deductible.

3. Stop mucking around and book the flights and hotel for BGGcon. Cost: About $2500. Plus shopping.

Hypothetically speaking, is there an optimal choice here?


Posted by on June 19, 2012 in games, travel


11 responses to “Decisions Decisions

  1. Fraser

    June 19, 2012 at 1:25 pm

    Based on some spam from the airline yesterday I think you are about $1500 short on option 2 and 3.

    • Melissa

      June 19, 2012 at 2:53 pm

      The big round trip (to Boston) is about $1800. Is there something else I should know?

  2. Maurice

    June 19, 2012 at 3:08 pm

    I didn’t see the Boston conference as a separate option there, so it looks like this fictional person is just using that as an excuse to go to bgg.con
    So it’s just the question of going to bgg.con or not.
    How do the fictional Otto and the fictional Bigster react to that? Are they okay with not going to Essen and letting fictional Melissa go to Dallas?

    25 pairs of fine shoes, some tax deductible, that’s a lot for a weekend in Dallas…..

    • Melissa

      June 19, 2012 at 7:20 pm

      There’s another conference in Sydney. I could go to either, but if I went to Boston a week before BGGcon then I would go to Dallas too. We Aussies are all about multi-purpose travel. So it’s more,
      1. Do I go to BGGcon?
      2. IF I go to BGGcon, do I go to the Boston conference as well, spending more time away from my beloveds and adding travel time and complications.

      The super frustrating thing is that Essen would only cost a couple of hundred dollars more – but it would upset the family if I went without them. These are the downsides of being a gamer family! (although Otto wants me to go to Germany, so I can get her a new Füller).

      There are all sorts of ways I can (hypothetically!) justify this:
      I’m going to be fairly landlocked in October-November (or “con season”) for the next 3-4 years given where the kids are in their school life (particularly Bigster).
      I could do all my Christmas shopping while I was away, saving a bundle (by spending half a bundle) (or maybe a whole bundle) (but it would be an Unusual and International sort of bundle)
      I’d be seeing old friends and meeting some for the first time.
      Fraser has been to BGGcon three times and I’ve never been. (By contrast, I have been to Essen twice, one of those times was with the whole family). Last year, when he went, we agreed that the next American con was “mine”.
      I’ve worked incredibly hard the past year but Fraser doesn’t want to consider my extra earnings part of family income (because it would set impossible standards for the future). So I will actually have a little money there – enough to do this.
      And – especially if we renovate – we’re unlikely to be able to afford this for a while.

      The most likely outcome is that I will let inertia win, and won’t do anything at all.

  3. Gregor McNish (@eclectics)

    June 19, 2012 at 11:12 pm

    If you want to go to bggcon, and it’s worth managing the financial hit then do it. It will be a fun time, you’ll meet lots of people you know online, you’ll have a blast. Save money by not going to the conference– unless it’s a really great one (as great in your field as bggcon is to gaming) why bother?

    Or, in gamey terms, are the VPs from going to bggcon worth the gold?

    • Melissa

      June 20, 2012 at 1:17 pm

      Oh, the VPs for BGGcon are definitely worth the gold. I just need to optimise my move and decide whether I should spend my action points somewhere else.

  4. Melissa

    June 20, 2012 at 1:16 pm

    A friend asked a very insightful question by email: How much is the games, and how much is the people?
    I’d say it’s 5% the games (if that) and 95% the people and/or the event.
    Same applies to Essen, where it’s probably 45% “the event”. (maybe slightly lower for BGGcon).

  5. Maurice

    June 20, 2012 at 10:51 pm

    What Füller does Otto want/need?
    You know there are dozens of people down here in Europe who are more then happy to help you with that.
    Sent me a description (and picture maybe) and I will see what I can do ;-D

    • Melissa

      June 20, 2012 at 11:39 pm

      Oh, you’re lovely. She has one at school, I think she just wants another. So it is the flimsiest of flimsy excuses, but definitely not something to ask favours for. I will save those for the important things, like games 😉

  6. Jonathan O'Donnell

    June 20, 2012 at 11:29 pm

    • Melissa

      June 20, 2012 at 11:43 pm

      Heh. Quite.
      I realised this evening that it would be Bad to go away then, because our big school Christmas market is held the following Friday night (Nov 23rd).
      I will still dream of going, though.


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