Friday, November 7, 2014

Mike Nystul Had a Stroke - So Let's Send Him to an Ultima Con

Sadly, Mike "Wandering Wizard" Nystul, has had a stroke. His second, apparently. He made an appeal for funds that ended last month. He raised $1,000 of a $1,500 goal.

Here's Mike's pitch:
Life is a struggle for everyone. It certainly has been for me. For years now a variety of bad turns resulted in me being penniless and briefly homeless. I hit bottom - hard (complete with a nigh spent sleeping omn a concrete bench).  
Recently I started turning things around. I got a job, a place to live and started working on moving forward.  
Two weeks ago I went to the ER because I was concerned about my high blood pressure. I have had a stroke before and was worried especially in the Austin heat. They admitted me. I spent two weeks learning I had another stroke without realizing it and that it had affected my vision.  
At some point during my hospital stay my vision got really blurry from about a foot to about three feet away. Exactly where I need to see to do my job (I work for a tech support cal center).  
I am in a bad spot. I had not been employed long enough to get far enough ahead of my bills to build a buffer so I was living hand to mouth. I wasn't working for the two weeks I was dealing with hospitals and clinics and I will be off for at least 2 to 4 more weeks hoping my vison clears. I can't cover that and I'm in danger of losing my momentum.  
Because I am a contract worker I don't really qualify for anything like leave so it's just me. I want to stay the course and turn things around. I want my life back. To do that I need a little help. My medical bills from these visits and the ones years ago when I had my first stroke are well into the tens of thousands but all I need now is to have enough to keep going - to keep pushing so that I can come back strong. 
So, he's not asking for money for his medical bills. Rent perhaps? Ah, "momentum."

Now, the Ultima Codex picked up on this appeal:
I had meant to report on his YouCaring fundraiser sooner, and as it is there are just a few days left in it. He has raised just shy of $900, with a goal of $1,500. I’m not sure of how the YouCaring works with respect to completing a fundraising goal; I don’t know if Nystul will receive what has been pledged regardless of whether he reaches his goal. But still…his situation seems pretty dire, so if at all you’re able, you might want to consider chipping in to help him bounce back some. 
Because if he’s able to pull through his present circumstances, I’ve heard tell that he might turn in an appearance at the upcoming Hearth of Britannia Legends of the Hearth event.
Okay. "Let's get him in better financial straights so he can make an appearance at our con."

That became my "WTF Moment."

Now, I've already given to the money pit known as "The Travelling Wizard." I backed two of his Kickstarters that will never be fulfilled.

I would even have been half tempted to throw a few gold his way to help with his hospitalization expenses, but to send him to a con?

Fuck that noise.

I feel for Mike. I wish him happiness and health. That does not include paying his bills so he can go to a convention.

Now, it wasn't Mike asking to go to the con in his appeal, but the folks at the Ultima Codex did a fine time slipping that in.

Hat tip to +Marc Gillham


  1. i miss read as "lets send him into a ultimate coma" - sorry

  2. I too thought it was another kick-starter called the Ultimate Con. Sorry to hear about his bad turn of health. What a shame he has so eroded goodwill through empty promises and unfulfilled efforts that the empathy meter barely registers.

  3. A couple minor clarifications:

    1. The HoBLotH isn't *my* "con", nor am I attending it. The guy who is putting it on is a friend in the Austin area, who in fact worked for Portalarium until just recently, and whose various creative insanities I have tended to promote a bit. It's his thing, and he's lined up a truly impressive list of former Origin Systems employees and associates to attend the event...Mike Nystul included.

    2. I can't really take credit for "slipping in" the detail about Mike Nystul attending the HoBLotH. Indeed, I only became aware of Mike's plight because the aforementioned organizer posted a link to the YouCaring campaign, with a note stating that Mike might be attending the HoBLotH should it succeed.

    Full disclosure: I was largely ignorant of Mike's history and his...fiscal unreliability prior to posting what I posted. Egg on my face, maybe; I was just relating news about someone who had been featured as an in-game persona in certain Ultima titles.

    1. Well, Ken, you should just disassociate yourself from Nystul, and make sure to keep a ten foot pole touch away for future reference. At this point, he's so unreliable that his name on a kickstarter will give me pause, rather than make me trust a reliable endorsement. (That came out harsher than I meant it, but if you need to fund a kickstarter to pay your hospital bills, just say so; my mother joined a KS to replace a fellow potter's oil tank, and, two mugs later, was perfectly satisfied with her level of involvement in the full-on charity work, but she was fully educated about what she was getting involved with.)

  4. I hate to be "that guy", but how do we know that even a single word of this appeal is true? I seem to remember a story about a little boy and a wolf...

  5. I just got out of the hospital last week after having two different heart surgeries.. can you guys send me to Gencon? (yes I am being a smartass but the hospital thing is true!)

  6. Hey, shitty things happen to shitty people sometimes. No apologies.


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