Web Paint-by-Number Forum
Topic #363: A new guy's perspective
By Dave Oas (khpdave)

#1: Dave Oas (khpdave) on Nov 25, 2012

First, a little background about me:

I'm 56 years old, been a Kansas state trooper for more than 30 years (looking to retire in about a year), I'm married and we have one son (a freshman at KU). I've been a GAMES magazine devotee for many years and found this site last spring while searching for PBN puzzles online - I made it a top favorite about 2 months ago. As Kristen pointed out, I recently decided to add my full name to my profile (something I RARELY do on public sites) because you won me over with your playful spirits and knife-edged wittiness.

I am not a "web chat" kind of guy and, until now, have mostly shied away from forum and chat discussions. I was just reading the exchanges from earlier this month about everyone's thoughts regarding judges for the WCs started by Jota. Frankly, I was a bit surprised by the friction that was evident - It was something I had never sensed in your puzzle comments to me.

Let me say that in my relatively short period of getting to "know" many of you, I consider you to be diverse, fascinating and talented people - in other words, the kind of people I enjoy hanging around with in the non-virtual world as well. Your observations and advise to me have been (and will continue to be) very much appreciated. With that said, I’d like to share my perspective, as a newbie. I do not expect it to weigh as heavily as the perspective of you who have years invested in this site, and especially that of Jan's.

I suspect this site is attractive to folks with similar traits such as being creative, intelligent, competitive, appreciating creativity in others, not having small egos and typically being outside the mainstream. If this is the case, then it should be no surprise that when leadership decisions must be made there's going to be friction. I have no doubt that any of the "regulars" here are very qualified to make good decisions for the good of the whole and may be uncomfortable with handing over the reins to someone else – even a friend.

In law enforcement, obviously conflict is something routinely dealt with. If that conflict doesn't require immediate intervention and resolution (which isn't very often, by the way), I've learned it's not a bad idea to step back and try to consider all options before making a quick decision. I guess MY suggestion to Jota (again, for what it's worth) regarding the WCs would be to take at least a one or two month hiatus and then "forum up" with everyone to re-evaluate the contest, its rules and the process. It might just provide some new perspective on the problem.

I feel like you've allowed me to be a part of your community and I appreciate that a great deal. Please don't be offended if I sometimes don't reply to comments or don't regularly take part in forum discussions. As I said, I'm not a big web chatter. I tend to keep things to myself until, like today, I find myself expressing thoughts, ideas and feelings I've been mulling over for some time.

I hope I haven't offended anyone or crossed any boundaries and I certainly don't consider myself an expert puzzle maker but I'm learning and I'm pleased to consider each of you a mentor.

I apologize for droning on. It ought to be awhile before I do this again,

Dave Oas
#2: Norma Dee (norm0908) on Nov 25, 2012
You are very much the diplomat. This out pouring is extremely well thought out and very much appreciated. Your experience in law enforcement gives you the ability to resolve conflicts, and makes your suggestions more than worthy of attention. I hope that others feel as I do, and I think your suggestion to put the puzzle on hiatus for a while is well worth considering. Thank you so much.
#3: Dave Oas (khpdave) on Nov 26, 2012
Norma, I didn't want to stick my nose into "family" matters and I'm happy you took my message in the spirit it was intended.

Sometimes after a less-than-pleasant day, I find that working or creating a puzzle or two (or three . . .) really helps me unwind and I look forward to reading comments - they make me laugh. I hope I return the favor from time to time.
#4: Norma Dee (norm0908) on Nov 26, 2012
Rest assured. You are a welcome addition to the "family". Solving and creating these puzzles seem to take a few more brain cells than, say, reading a book, so it makes a good place to go to unwind.
#5: Wombat (wombatilim) on Nov 26, 2012
Thanks, Dave; this is some useful advice.

I've long held the opinion that the input of the "new blood" is immensely valuable.
#6: Dave Oas (khpdave) on Nov 26, 2012
Thanks WB!
#7: Aldege Cholette (Aldege) on Dec 7, 2012
Welcome aboard Dave,it's nice to have you join our family,and I really enjoy your puzzles. I hope you will stay with us,despite the frustrations of the 504's. I don't comment much in the forum,and I don't solve. I just enjoy creating,and I peek and comment,and sometimes rate for quality only. I hope you have some fun here.:)
#8: Dave Oas (khpdave) on Dec 7, 2012
Thanks Aldege. I don't mind the timeouts - I just figure it's the by-product of a popular site that's growing (It's less time consuming and a lot cheaper than therapy).

I do have fun here and I enjoy solving your puzzles and reading your serial installments (I'd love to meet "Mama").

Please, keep on creating and thanks for your encouragement!

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