I am 31 and I'm getting old. I probably hate you. I run The Low(er) Tier also. We podcast, publish indies and are getting into development. I enjoy watching the weather channel and complaining about grass. I have two beautiful kids, a wife and am dealing with life and just trying to do my best with it all. My other interests (besides games) are: reading, hiking, playing with my kids, yelling at old(er) people, collecting various virus samples, stalking Smurfee, thinking about working out, itching my bare butthole and seeing how long I can go, without smelling my finger and Batman. I love old school cars (Chevy), football (Packers & Niners) and of course: Vidya Gamze!
My favorite games as a wee lass were: SMB3, Gunstar Heroes, Commander Keen, Blake Stone, Doom/Quake, Excitebike, Anything from Sierra/Lucasarts and MK. Now days I'm a filthy game slut. I play it all, I love it all. I'm always down to game with anyone, so feel free to hit me up on whatever you see I'm on. I've been on Dtoid quite awhile now (almost 5 years) and have only started getting involved the past couple years. You can find me lurking mainly in Cblogs and OH. I also do the weekend recaps in Cblogs and have started a podcast called Low(er) Tier. I love you sick bastards. In a sexy non-sexual way.
I'm also on that thar Tweetarr @MikeMcPhil. Feel free to hit me up, I'm always down to chat.
Suppers brahs and brahettes. Been awhile since I ran a contest time and I'll be damned if this game didn't inspire me to run another. I'm of course talking about Broforce. This game has been giving more fun than a lot of purchases I've made the past year. I realize though that the $15 price tag turns some away as does the Early Access, but let me assure you, this is one of the best Early Access games I've ever played (I'm an indie whore, so I play a lot of them too, also wink wink at Door Kickers. Check it out as well).
Just fucking look at that carnage. It's beautiful.
Look at those characters..... my white sausage is all a tingle just staring at 'em.
Oh Lordy, I'm at full mast now. Alright, before I make myself cum, I realize some of you may have questions such as "Phil, what is Broforce?" To those people I say shut the fuck up idiots. How do you not know? Occasionally I may also wish their mothers had aborted them, but I digress. Check out this trailer before I tell you how to win, just so we are all clear on what this awesome pile of game is.
Hold on, let me wipe the keyboard off.....
Alright, now how do you win this amazing masterpiece? Well maggots, I am giving away 3 copies of this beauty to those of you that impress me with either a picture of you dressed up as your favorite 80s/90s action icon along with a quote from said movie in caption form/A drawing of said icon (must be able to prove it's yours and also give it a quote caption) or the final option: A 1000 word essay on the your favorite movie from said eras that includes a list of your favorite 5 quotes from said film. Sound too hard? Well kiss my ass. I'm dropping $45 on you butts and for a single dad, that shit ain't nothing to scoff at.
Now, you have until 4/22/14 to make this happen and post it here. If you are going to write the essay, pm me for my email and send it to me that way.
So thanks to you guys my brother and his family have made it this far. It hasn't been easy, but your kindness (and some help from myself/others) has carried him this far. The Indiegogo was a massive failure, but private donations have helped a lot. The Indiegogo has made $192 so far, but only $40 of that was made available, due to credit card payments (Indiegogo holds all credit card payments until the campaign is over). In the past two months through Dtoid and Twitter, we have made his family almost $1300. That has helped a lot. Between that and food closets and myself, we have somewhat kept food on his table and a bit of gas their vehicles to get the kids to school and such. My brother and I thank you so much everything. Dtoid is an amazing community and our family as well. Now let's get to the good, the bad and the ugly in this update.
My brother has found a lawyer to take his case. He will finally be able to go after these bastards that caused all this and hopefully make sure that they never pull this on anyone else. After a lot of searching and talking to different lawyers, he is confident that he found one that's not a scumbag and is willing to work mostly for free, until a settlement can be achieved. Also the lawyer isn't asking for a huge chunk of said settlement, which is nice, considering most wanted around 40-50% to take the case pro-bono or whatever the correct term is. Papers have been filed and things are moving ahead on that front.
Child support has finally found my brothers ex-wife and is going after her for all the years of child support she owes (around 20g's worth). She has been served and has a court date of Oct. 11th. This court date is to enforce payment and the sack of garbage has zero wiggle room to get out of it. She has a good job and makes about $4k a month. A week or two after the case, payments should start appearing and I can't even explain how much this will help out. An extra $600-$800 a month is a life changer at this point. To top that off, my brother's disability case is also getting closer, so that's two checks a month just over the horizon.
The last good thing is that they have received a lot of free furniture, toys and some clothes the past month as donations. The kids have some clothes now (not enough, but much better off), they have some toys to play with and the house has some decent furniture and doesn't look like a ghost town anymore. All in all the past month has been much brighter than we could have hoped for, despite the Indiegogo failing hard and not being able to draw attention to this whole thing. 80% is on you guys, once again, thank you so much, from the bottoms of both all our hearts.
Now we move into not so happy news. Health wise, things are getting worse. My sister in law has been diagnosed Sarcoidosis. Sarcoidosis is an inflammation of the lung tissue and other organs, that basically never goes away from my understanding. It can also great growths on various organs, which causes more problems as I'm sure you can figure out. It is treatable, but not nice. They don't know what causes it, but after the toxic black mold exposure (I believe the reading in their bedroom was 24k units and the average presence is 300-400 units in most affected homes, just so you have an idea of how bad the exposure was) and the kids developing breathing issues..... yeah. The best part? The middle daughter is now showing all the symptoms and needs to go the doctor as well. Bloody hell. Moving on with the health issues, my brother has now been diagnosed with full blown asthma. He also requires an inhaler now, just like the children. Once again, all these people were healthy and great before the exposure, now they all have breathing issues (which can all be linked to the mold exposure). Shitty, horrible stuff all around on the medical front and continuing that trend, my brother was hospitalized two days ago. No one is sure what happened, but he woke up puking his guts out, then couldn't breath and then went into a series of small seizures that ended up with him spending the day in the hospital. Doctors aren't sure what caused it, but it could very well be related to lack of oxygen he is getting from his asthma, combined with all the meds he has to now take relating to that and the issues with his arms. It was scary shit and for a second my sister and I were scared we might lose him. Moving on from those nightmares...
The Indiegogo.... sigh. What a failure of a campaign. I take full responsibility for that. I have pushed and promoted as much as I could, but in the end I couldn't pull it off. So we are throwing the specialist out the window and are going to just let it peter out during this final push for help (I'll get to that in a minute). We are thankful for the few hundred dollars it's raised, but my brother can't even touch half of it and as I said, we are giving up on the specialist, it doesn't appear to be needed anyway. Everyone in that family now has documented problems all stemming from the exposure, the medical history shows that none of these conditions were present before the exposure and we feel since we can't pull the Indiegogo off, that will have to be enough. I will throw this out there though. It is really fucking frustrating to see people get 5g's to make a well in their backyard, get money for vacations, vagina's and other things, while I watch part of my family struggle, stress and starve. I'm not saying these people don't deserve what they have received at all, good for them and I wish them all the luck, just pisses me off that we couldn't get even half our goal with all the pushing. I hit up everyone and their mom and haven't relented on twitter, in email, in person and still nothing really, except from y'all. Extremely fucking frustrating.
The final bad thing is the one that's been present through all these blogs, money. It's the main reason this began. There is never enough food in the house for them, never enough gas in the car, no extra activities for the kids (I'm not talking trips to expensive stuff, I mean driving to the park, going somewhere free, getting 4 $1 ice cream cones, none of that stuff), barely scraping by every week. As I mentioned above, the middle daughter needs to go the doctor, well guess what? No money for that. Family needs to pick up scripts? No money. Out of peanut butter? You get the idea. It's a constant struggle week to week with just enough trickles to scrape by. Dtoid, you and I are the only ones making those scrapes happen. You have all been amazing and so helpful and generous, this isn't a rant about not getting money, it's just a fact of the situation. My peanut butter example? The doctor one? All are from the past two days. Not to mention, since my sister had to miss work to take my brother to the hospital, they are now over $400 behind on next months rent. My sister works her ass off, my brother holds the house down and is out looking for work (despite being disabled, I might add) and I am donating every spare cent I have to them and it's not enough. Grrrrrrrrrrrr.
The ugly is that I'm not here just to give you guys an update. I'm here for one final push. Once child support and disability start rolling in, things will dramatically improve in that house and that's only about a month away. Unfortunately a month is a long time when you have nothing and bills are mounting. That lawyer I mentioned? Well as I said, he will work mostly for free, but he is requiring an upfront retainer of $1100 and will deduct the rest out of any settlement reached. My niece needs to go the doctors again and part of the family needs to pick up medicine that medicare doesn't fully cover. More food is needed, as is gas to get my sister to work and the kids to school. Rent is short due to my sister having to miss work and other expenses that have come up (they picked up the kids medicine, but not their own and they needed to get shoes for the kids). I know I have bugged the shit out of all of you, but this the last push. I need to get my family through this last month, so here we are with a revised plan and goal. Let me lay out the expenses:
-Doctors visit and meds: $200
-Money towards rent: $400
-Lawyer fee: $1100
-Food for the month: $300
-Gas for the month: $200 (They both drive cheap old Lincolns that barely run and were given to them)
Total = $2200.00
If we can raise that in the next week or so, we can relieve a tremendous amount of stress off this families shoulders. It won't let them live in luxury, hell, it'll barely be good and probably won't be enough (We are talking a family of 6 with medical conditions, special food needs, etc.), but it will be breathing room from the constant empty cupboards and low gas lights. Not to mention the bills they are behind on, the ones that haven't hit yet and all that good stuff.
Phil, I'm broke/I've donated already/What can I do that doesn't involve money?
I know you guys have given your all, I know you have helped spread the word. Once again, so grateful for everything, every comment, every retweet, etc. I have so many handies to give out it's not even funny anymore, but we can do more. One last time. Spread this link, email it to friends, post it on Facebook/Twitter/MySpace/Vine/Whatever, post a little thing in the breakroom at work/school. I still believe if we can the right people to listen, we can do something for this family more than get them by, while they worry about next week. I am down on my knees, begging you guys. You don't need to donate anymore, just spread the word please. Spread it everywhere you can and for one last time, thank you all. I love you, my brother loves you. We are blessed to have you all in our lives. I will throw the links for paypal/Indiegogo below for ease of access.
Indiegogo takes 10% of whatever is donated and holds credit card payments until the end of the campaign.
PayPal offers in most cases immediate access to funds from anywhere in the world (with a small charge for credit or international). My brother's email (linked to his PayPal) is: email@example.com
Also, if anyone wants to talk to me or my brother, ask for proof, see anything, get emailed pictures, etc. Anything at all, PM me or hit me up on Twitter (@MikeMcPhil). We will gladly answer any questions you have and provide anything you'd to see to show you that we are straight up with all of this. My brother is hesitant to post any important papers/the mold test, etc. due to this being a legal case, but he will gladly private message any of that stuff to you and I will be glad to help him with it. Why am I saying this? Because since I started this, I've had some folks express doubt, ask for it, ask why we weren't posting it and so on. So I want to make it clear that all you have to do is ask and we will provide. One other thing I want to address is hate. I've had some nasty pm's from a few different places (not on here though), since I started posting about this and spreading the word. If you want to talk shit, lay into me for posting this stuff or whatever reason you have, have the balls to do it in public. I am trying to help a family with 4 kids that I am related to. The only family I have, besides my own kids. If you can't understand that, then just keep your closed or as I said, do it in public. I will publish your messages from now on.
Hello there folks. It's been awhile since the last community chat, so let's get another one going. This time the topic is: What do you want people to STFU most about right now? Why? What controversy of the week are you just fucking sick of? What problem with the industry is just fucking over and dead? What would you do to fix it? How would you stop it? If it doesn't need to be stopped or fixed and people are just being drama queens, tell us why. Elaborate, just don't leave a sentence and bounce. Leave a decent, thoughtful comment, send me a PM, an email (ask for it in a PM) and after the next month, I'll compile all the submissions I get, pick the best and put together a fancy, nice blog with them all. Once the blog is released, we can bug Andy to maybe get it front paged and have a real discussion/name calling fest in the comments!
WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! Let's do this!
It has come to my attention that some of you don't feel comfortable telling someone to STFU. In that case maybe you have a topic or something burning ya up and you'd like to give people some A.I.D.S. What is A.I.D.S Phil, you ask? Well friends, A.I.D.S. stands for:
Actively, Involved, Discussion, Session(s).
So if you aren't happy telling people to STFU, let's spread some A.I.D.S.
Yes, I'm back again for my brother. His first Indiegogo fell far short of his mark, raising only $320 and a box with a weeks worth of gluten-free food in the past month of trying to help his family. While my brother and I are both very grateful, I still believe that we can do better. I was hoping some of you Dtoiders lurking around PAX might be willing to pass this around and show people my brother's story and see if they could help with what we're trying to do. My brother felt starting another Indiegogo would help. I personally think private donations of money, food and clothes is the way to go, but hey, might as well try them both.
We restarted the campaign with a goal of $19,680 since we had already gotten the $320. Why so much? Well besides being out of food and low on gasoline, clothes, toys, basic needs, they also need to go see that specialist in L.A. and get some lawyer action going, to go after the folks that lied and caused this situation. My brother is going to be updating the Indiegogo site later today (friday the 30th) with more pics, showing their current state of living, the paperwork he has concerning medical, disability and food stamps and including more evidence of the toxic mold that destroyed their home and made them sick. Below I'm going to include the short story of what happened and below that links to help. Thank you for taking the time to read this and a huge thanks to everyone that has helped so far. A few of you have continued helping and checking in and it means the world to my brother and I.
I love you guys.
Our Story (short version):
My name is Jaimie Jurgensen. My wife and I have four lovely children. Around the last part of 2011 we began having problems in the duplexes we were renting. Moisture was appearing all throughout the house, every night. Mold began to appear as well. Before the mold began to appear, we contacted maintenence about the moisture. After numerous calls, the maintenence man came out and told me the place needed to be remodeled. These duplexes were old military housing that had been decommisioned and never fixed up. We did our best to keep our house dry, but a few weeks later, we began to get sick. I was vomiting and having breathing problems, my youngest children were both put on breathing treatments and inhalers as well. My wife and children had various illnesses during this as well.
One day my wife and kids were on our bed and I jumped in to the pile of love myself. As I did, the bed came away from the wall and we noticed that behind where the bed was on the wall, was huge patches of various colors of mold. Mainly a blackish color though. We went through the house looking behind things, checking closets, behind pictures, etc. We found mold over the house. Mainly concentrated in our bedroom though. We contacted the manager of our building, demanding something be done, our clothes and things replaced, and were denied. We were told our renters insurance should cover these items, but the insurance stated that since it was a preexisting condition of the duplexes, it was THEIR responsibility to do this. I contacted the manager again and asked for cleanup and a mold test to be done. They came and did their alleged cleanup and test. We had to go stay in hotels during this, draining our dwindling finances further, we were not allowed to stay at the house. After the alleged cleanup, I asked to see copies of the mold report, worried about what was in our house. Especially since my littlest ones were sick and my wife and I were also having bad problems. We were given the round around so bad, it got to the point that I contacted another company and had them come in and do a mold test. During this process, we noticed the moisture had come back, the mold was showing through on places they had painted. Where there was drywall, it was getting so wet it was falling out of the places they had patched. It was a nightmare. Adding to the nightmare, the mold report I commisioned came back showing HUGE amounts of toxic black mold in our bedroom and high levels elsewhere in the duplex. We complained about the problems contuining to managment and repeated the cleaning process at least 4 times more. During this, the managment told me their mold report came back clear, yet refused to allow me to see a copy of it.
By this time it was around February '12. We had had enough. The health concerns and problems were mounting. The whole family was being affected and we were getting no where with the managment of the duplexes. Something had to give, we were being lied to by people who are supposed to follow laws concerning this, but were not. We contacted many lawyers about this and while everyone told us we had a case, no one seemed to want to take it. I had our mold report, pictures, witnesses, the whole nine yards, but couldn't get anywhere for awhile. With no other choice, but to stay and get sicker, we put all our possesions into storage and went to stay with some of my wifes family in another town. During this period, I lost my job due to all the events occuring and my ongoing health problems. Things quickly fell apart from there, culminating in us bouncing around friend to friend and culminated in us being homeless. This went on for months. I was able to get another job and move us into a discounted rent situation. The landlord was absolutely horrible and odd, but beggars can't be choosers. I continued to work my butt off to rebuild our lives, when problems started occuring in my arms. I recieved tendon and ligment damage to both arms, landing me smack dab on disablity status at 31. I need corrective surgery to fix arms, long story short. My wife has found work, but we still aren't making ends meet. County aid is anything but, with being accepted then cut off. Red Cross and Salvation Army don't help people, that are victims of this. We've tried everything we could. We are paying out of pocket for our medical, no insurance. Nightmare city.
Through this horrid patch, we did get a lawyer interested in our case though. He commended me for the evidence I had collected, moving out, putting things in storage, etc. and is trying to help us now. While I have done most things right and made smart moves concerning a lawsuit, due to our health problems, we need to see a specialist in L.A. to go further with our case and get our problems documented, which leads to why I am here, asking for your help and prayers. We have lost everything. My children have been through so much, my wife as well. I am now disabled and useless and we are just not able to make things work. The strain on our lives and marriage is tremendous. We have very little family or friends and they have helped as much as they possibly could. Our backs are up against a wall and we are left with no where else to turn.
What we are asking for and why:
We are asking for $20,000 (holy s**t that's a lot, I know). The testing and visit to the specialist in L.A. is $5,000 a head. "But wait, you're only asking for $20k and there are 4 of you..." Yes, we know. Our main concern is getting my wife and youngest daughter tested, since they stayed in the room, with the highest concentration of the spores and suffer the most problems. Next up is my second youngest, due to her problems health wise. That's $15,000 right there. The other $5k would go to paying our outstanding bills, putting food on our table (at the time of writing this, I have literally 4 dinners left to make us), helping us outfit the kids for school (supplies and some decent clothes, backpacks, etc.), putting gas in my wifes vehicle, so she can get to work and other everyday expenses.
Getting us tested by this doctor is the puzzle piece we are missing in going after these people for what they've done to us and getting justice for my family and all that we have lost. It's not about getting a huge settlement, it's about making right on all we've lost and what we've suffered due to this. Imagine losing it all. Everything from when you were a baby on up. Imagine it happening to your kids. All they're favorite toys and books, all of it, gone. The health problems and expenses. The lies fed to you and your family.....
The rest of the money as I said, goes to us living decently for a short while. It's been a long time since that's happened and I want to see my babies smile again. I want my wife to be happy and I'd like to also be a little happy. Being disabled and being shot down left and right for everything, this all I can think to do now.
What happens if you beat the goal?
Anything we make beyond the goal, goes to the rest of the children and myself, being tested. 6 people = $30k for all of us to be tested. After $30k and up to $40k, goes towards paying dow our debts and bills, putting food on the table, taking care of the kids and replacing their things. Now, if we somehow manage to make more than $40k, what we are planning to do with the money after that is starting a foundation for those in situations like ours.
Yes. We are not the only suffers of toxic black mold. We aren't the only family out there with health problems, getting shot down for aid left and right. We all know things aren't easy these days and if we make more than our goal, we want to help out others like us. Helping them with mold tests, visiting doctors, paying hotel/rent expenses, bills, food, etc. Whatever we can do to pay it forward. The best way we think to do that, is setup a foundation, to help people in similar circumstances.
How does this story end?
We don't know. We are trying to go after the company that did this to us, hence this campaign to help us with the testing and possibly food and bills. Our situation is dire, but we are doing everything we can. Despite being disabled, I am still fighting to recieve, actual disability payments from SSI, I am out hunting for jobs that don't really require my hands and as you can imagine, that is not easy. My wife is working and as I said above, we still can't make the ends meet. The medical expenses, prescriptions, bills and everything else, have driven us into debt, when before we were doing alright. If we can get the help we need, we can get over this mountain of a hump and start rebuilding. We just need some breathing room and to get these tests done, so we can hopefully recoup our losses from the company that managed the duplexes. If the lawsuit doesn't work, then at least we have the breathing so I can maybe find work and we can start putting into savings again, instead of always taking out until it's past dry, like it is now.
If you can't donate, please tweet the link for this, tell your friends, notify your news channel, email co-workers, please help our story get out and expose these people.
So yeah. That's my brother and his families story. Short version. As you can see, pretty shitty. Whatever you can do to help, please, please do. I'm going to throw a list out now of suggested ways to help:
1. Donate food or local grocer gift cards. PM for the address.
2. Donate clothes and toys or gift cards for Walmart, etc. PM me for address.
3. Since we're not just trying to get them fed and clothed, but also get them gas, get them to the doctors and some help. Donate money. You can do it through the Indiegogo here: http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/family-in-need-pt-2
or you can do it directly through paypal here: firstname.lastname@example.org
You can also ask my brother any questions you have at that email as well. There is also sending checks/money orders, in that case, PM me for the address
4. Retweet the link to this blog and spread the word.
5. Contact our local news stations with this story. KCRA and KXTV are the big ones (those are links btw), tell what a local company has done to this family, the lies and danger put upon them and demand that something be done.
6. Offer suggestions to spread the word or better the campaign and get more help. We know about food closets, goodwill, all the cheap stuff. We are utilizing every tool at our disposal to help, it's how my brother has survived the past month, but it's not enough. With two daughters allergic to gluten (celiac disease), it's hard to get enough food for everyone and the food closets here are limited as is Goodwill/Salvation Army and local churches.
I'm sorry to keep posting these (this is the third), but I am all my brother and his family have and until I get told to stop, I am going to use every resource I have to try and help. I have to see these little girls be sick, I have to see that house out of food and look my brother and sister in the eye and see the sadness and despair. Almost every day. If it was your family and you couldn't help financially anymore, would you stop? Thank you all for reading and for your support.
I don't know what else to say really. My brother is almost out of food. He needs help and I'm all he has. I've been spamming twitter, I've pleaded and begged (thank you everyone that spread the word and the few who donated), everyone I could. I tried to get a loan, I wrote this blog and I'm out of ideas and my brother is out of food after tonight. The shit that happened to him (read the blog and indiegogo linked in it for the story) was through no fault of his own. I can't help him anymore than I already have (gave him some of my dwindling food this week), because I still don't get paid for another week. Not to mention I have bills of my own and kids of my own. I'll help where I can, but I just can't do much.
As I write this, his IndieGoGo has 58hrs left. We've made $255 so far. $55 of that is locked up until about a week after it ends, because it was payment through credit card. The $200 is the only thing that got him through until last week. I look at IndieGoGo and I see people getting thousands upon thousands for bullshit reasons and it flat out pisses me off. Tit jobs, personal needs, fan movies... these things get funded. Sure there is a lot of noble causes on there as well, but isn't a family on the verge of starving, who had everything taken from them due to a lying, scum bag company a noble cause as well? Getting justice for what was done and taken from a family of 6, ain't worth anyone's time? Two of my nieces need medication to breathe normally now, they have fucking breakdowns all the time.... THEY ARE LITTLE KIDS FFS! I'm just so damn frustrated at the moment. Not at any of you. Seriously, all the retweets and help you guys have provided... I'm just so thankful for. My brother is as well, check the comment he left on the original blog I wrote for him (link above).
Is there something else we can do though guys? If we were to relaunch the IndieGoGo, how could we improve it? As of right now could anyone retweet this blog? Anyone got some spare change, ideas, fucking anything? I'm out of 'em all and my brother needs help badly. Please help me, to help him. I'll link everything below, in case anyone does retweet this blog. Once again, thank everyone for what they have done. Seriously, I love you guys, I'm just super frustrated right now.
I know you all here have given so much, but if anyone wants to donate right now and not through the Indiegogo, leave a comment or pm me and I'll give you his email. Shit most of you probably already have it, from when you helped me. If you do, send away. This shit is.... it's just so damn wrong. Hearing my brother cry his ass off an hour ago, set me off and there has to be more I can do dammit. So one more time: retweets, ideas to improve the campaign, ideas to make money, any tiny donation, anything... please.