What a crazy ride it has been on TAY since I spoke to you guys last Friday, huh? From E1Salvador's very own Video Game store opening, a grumpy old troll paying us a visit, Ghost Stories on the Weekend Open Forum, informative lessons on Gamification in the Classroom by GBD, the introduction of our brand new Makeshift Messaging System, All the X's and Green that covered much of the page after the Xbox One reveal, Ani-Club's (successful!) first Club Meeting, Poco's New Column to welcome all to a place where they're free of judgment, and finally to TUT's well-deserved promotion to Admin Status...we've had quite the week. Why am I telling you all this stuff you already know? I'll get to that but first: Welcome to Flashback Friday Fun Times!

There's so much more that happened this week and I've only scratched the surface. Do you know why that is? It's due to the fact that our TAY has become quite the hub for a welcoming environment of fun and it is an amazing community. And did you think I could honestly forget about TAY Classic? No way! In fact, in my mind the two are never separate and one cannot exist without the other. It's where I got my start, and it's where all the cool kids still hang out.

It was at the beginning of April when I got noticed floating around in TAY Classic. Those days were weighing on me. There were basically 7 days or so for me to finish cleaning up my desk after learning of pending unemployment. In between boxing up my life and sobbing with close co-workers/friends, I frequented Kotaku.

Kinja was going to go into full effect and TAY was going to become its own thing. Authorship was being handed out and I wanted it. But I was scared to put my voice out there. I knew no one. I was a long time reader at Kotaku and commented just twice. Both times my comments went ignored and I was quite happy with just reading the fun articles and chuckling at the comments made by the regulars.

So I hesitated.

What sort of story could I tell to get noticed? I put a couple on there - a tale of a Jammie Dodger trade, and my attendance at the Luigi's Mansion Launch Event in NYC - but it was publicly shaming myself as a rubber mallet that got Dyram's attention (I don't know what that says about you, Dyram...you sick person!).

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Feedback was positive. Comments were made. The little fire count on the side continued to grow after my story was shared to TAY from TAY Classic. I was happy.

The next day I racked my brain to figure out what to write next. Luckily for me, a dinosaur was hanging out on the street terrorizing New Yorkers and I wrote about that. UI 2.0 came around and commented that he was unimpressed. I had a friendly discussion with him. And now I'm going to publicly apologize because you were right, UI 2.0. Of course it was a guy in a dinosaur suit! He wasn't just all mechanical. Heh Heh.

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Dyram found the story amusing enough and granted me authorship.

The day after that I wrote a silly article about my 3DS' Mii. More comments. Poco came around and had me laughing at something. It was at that point that I wanted to stay, even though my first article as an Author was not too well-received, I felt. It just made me want to write more and figure out how to appeal to the masses.

Since then I've written quite the bit. Sometimes successful. Sometimes not. One got shared straight to Kotaku by the boss man himself and it felt great. It was even more of a shock considering it was a story I literally was mulling over for nearly a year to get done and it was the last thing I ever thought would be popular enough to be shared. That day, I was at the dentist for 2 hours and then stuck in traffic for 4. It was an awful sort of day but coming home to my little TAY Community made the day a little bit more enjoyable.

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So why the life story, Zarnyx? Well, every day things just keep getting better around here. I laugh a lot daily - something I can thank you guys for. I keep making new buddies and it's the lively atmosphere that might encourage a shy guy to comment. It's the ridiculous banter that definitely gets them to stay. I share music with you guys and you with me. I embarrassed myself on the main page this week (as you can see from the screenshot of the correspondence above) which I think I will never live down if Habbol has anything to say about it. And yesterday, I got the cutest package in the mail from the U.K. from one of our TAY'ers, who was *crazy* enough to want to send one (hope my package makes it to you soon)!

It was such a well-thought out package too.

I mean, just look at all that stuff! Cadbury Buttons, cadbury animals (if you've never had one, you're missing out on life), pork cracklings, a kinder egg and Jammie Dodgers.

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This alone has me most excited. Jammie Dodgers with jam and custard! CUSTARD. The Eleventh Doctor's Food! And my food. I love custard, after all. Custard is cool.

And a Kinder egg! I don't know the last time I had one due to some um, circumstances out of my control. Heh heh. I'll...talk about it later.

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A sweet, funny letter. I don't think mine was this sweet. In fact, I almost forgot to include it in the package I sent because of some distractions at the post office. Oh that would have been rude.

But best of all, inside my package was a strip of bacon made from paper. Anyone who gives me bacon is a life long friend. And while everything in the package made me grin like a loon, the inclusion of this paper bacon was the most heartfelt, thoughtful, and funny gift I received.

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So that was my Flashback Friday this week, guys. After this last bit, I will hold the sappy down because I don't do sappy. I've got a reputation to uphold after all. I know a lot of change has happened since the Kinja switch. Some of our regulars left. Some are still lurking and watching to see where this thing goes. New people come by and they're wondering if they should hang out a little.

What I can say from a personal stand point is this: Thank you to everyone here for the welcome. Thank you for encouraging me to stay. Thank you for the friendships I've built, the ones I'm building, and the future ones waiting to happen. May the TAY continue to grow and remain the awesome sauce that it is.

My story's not unique. Share your love of the TAY below. Or not. Now get outta here and stop laughing at my feelings and my use of "Awesome Sauce". I never used the term when it was popular, okay?! and NO! You cannot have any of my candy!

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  • Visit TAY Classic and get to writing! Maybe you wanted to post a question? Maybe you wanted to talk about your day? Or maybe you wanted an Admin/author to notice you (here's a hint, dinosaurs always get noticed...)? What's that? You're a little bit confused by how everything works around here? That's okay because there's a guide by TheUnfathomableTruth that should help with that.
  • We also cannot stress this enough but please! If you're trying to get your voice heard to a wider audience, make sure to make one of your tags "TAY Classic" when you publish!

Happy Friday, All!