Good times ahead

So as some of you know, I started working at a new sports talk radio station in town, 97.3 The Zone (@thezonesports), as a producer. I’ve only actually been doing some work there for a few days now, but I’ve already got some good things planned on my schedule. I’m really looking forward to it.

It’s been so nice to wake up each morning, and go in to a studio and talk/listen about sports all afternoon. It’s so much more relaxing and enjoyable than my days have been spent over the last couple of months. Between trying to find a job, and having to deal with all of this @GoW_Nation crap, it’s been a pain in the ass. But now I get to enjoy myself each morning. Today couldn’t have been any better as the entire day was spent talking about the running game at Alabama, and the upcoming races in the Chase for the Cup (including Talladega, just down the road).

Of course I come home to the same old crap that I have grown tired of over the past few months. Dealing with kids who think their shit don’t stink, and having to try to keep a website from exploding from a virus that is still wriggling it’s way through the server. And of course, we can’t forget the difference maker in it all – I get paid to work with sports, and I lose money every freaking day dealing with gaming.

So I think the choice is pretty much obvious. I have a little too much invested right now to just drop it and start up sports full time. It will have to be a smooth, easy transition – and I know that. I also know @SirScoots will just giggle and say “He’ll be back.” But this time, I have no secret desire to “come back.”

The best times in gaming to me are when I’m playing with my friends. Not when I’m dealing with the drama, or the shit-fits that get thrown my way every five seconds. Not the having to manage a staff of people (although I like the GN staff, it’s just too much work) and manage a website. But the best times ever, are late at night, when I forget about anything going on in gaming other than whatever game is in my Xbox, or booted up on my PC.

Late nights, our group of guys, collectively known to most people as “Cool Runnings” or “derpGaming,” like to get on games like SC2 and play 3v3’s until our eyes bleed because it’s FUN. Or perhaps we’ll pop in NHL 12 and play some EASHL because it’s FUN. Or maybe play some League of Legends on our smurf accounts and beat up on new kids because it’s FUN. THIS is when I enjoy gaming, and when I started taking things too seriously, all of that went away, and it’s taken me raging over stupid things to finally realize what all I am missing from gaming.

I have a deep respect for eSports, or else I wouldn’t have slaved away the past 4-5 years over it. Going to Germany and China on Team USA, was some of the best experiences of my life. But there is a difference in doing all this while goofing off in college for 10 years, and doing it now when I need to focus on my career as a sports journalist, and try to enjoy myself. I finally opened up and realized that I don’t need gaming anymore like I felt I did before.

If you follow me on Twitter (@jlunce) and don’t want to see stuff about sports, then I’m sorry, and you might as well unfollow me. I am going to start tweeting from work more often, and in the field more often. This blog will shift gears (no pun intended) to what I originally intended it to be about, and that is sports, and the other things I am passionate about outside of gaming. And then comes the fun part. If you are on my friends list because we are really, truly, good friends, then I hope we can play together. Those who just send out scrim messages, and I will never play with, you gotta go. I’m not in games to compete anymore.

I need to get out of gaming, and I think I am going to really enjoy my new job. The people I work with are amazing in just the short time I’ve known them, and I think I’m going to be happy for a while here. If you ever want to game, let me know – but also know that when it comes to competing, it’s either for fun, or I’m not doing it.

I will be in Phoenix this year for Devastation as my token gaming event of the year. I used to average about 10-12 events a year over the last 3 years, but this year I have been to zero. There is a reason for that. However, I have racked up some incredible mileage numbers, so I decided to splurge for my one event this year and go first class, round trip, for free. I’ll enjoy Devastation, then change gears (no pun intended…again) and get ready for the end of NASCAR, the meat of the pro and college seasons of football, and get ready for a few awesome months.

I love you all…except the people who won’t stop bitching about GN settings – I hate you.

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Jon Lunceford is a sports media broadcaster and digital professional. Jon is a graduate of the University of Alabama school of journalism, and played football at Birmingham-Southern College. He has also won two AHSAA Football State Championships while at Homewood High School and was a two-time World Cyber Games Team USA representative. He currently hosts Primetime on WJOX 94.5 and runs the high school athletics site JoxPreps.