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It's been a while. Quite a bit has happened. I injured my right knee drunken dancing a couple months back (Sam's 21'st birthday), and had to keep off it for a while, which really sucked, because I was just starting to get into running as part of my new, more healthy lifestyle. Could that have had something to do with it? I dunno. So I took it easy with the leg, and it was starting to feel better, until 3 weeks later, I was being drunk and stupid and injured it again.
At this point I had moved out of my parent's house to live with a friend of mine, and things were going pretty okay. Unfortunately that fell through, and I'm back living with my parents until I can find a job. I've been looking, but not much luck. I need to be more proactive in searching. But it sounds like I'll be able to get some adjunct work at a nearby community college in a couple months, and that'll at least be enough to pay rent, food, etc. to live in town while I look for something better.
A couple weeks ago, a friend of mine had a pool party. The party was pretty tame compared to normal because of the insane heat wave that was going through, but it picked up (IMO) once I got drunk and got in the pool. In my drunken stupidity, I put too much pressure on my knee again, but it wasn't so bad this time because I was in the pool. I think I'm good to run again, but I don't want to push my luck. In the meantime, I've pretty much mastered the art of dancing without moving my right knee.
Finally, I've lost 13 lbs since I decided to take better care of my health and nutrition about 3 months ago, and I definitely feel stronger. I've also been browsing the TLHF thread regularly, and asking any questions I've had in there. I'm not doing olympic lifts or anything yet, but I am eating much more healthy food. Cutting out the unhealthy food has actually been easier than I thought, until recently, I've been craving soda, pizza, BBQ, etc. Not sure why. I think I just need to diversify my food a bit, as I've been eating pretty much the same foods for the past 3 months (primarily lean chicken, vegetables, and fruit).
(12)ZvZ: 5-7 41.6%
(17)ZvP: 9- 8 52.9%
(11)ZvT: 3- 8 27.2%
(40)ZvZ: 21-19 52.5%
(47)ZvP: 27-20 57.4%
(24)ZvT: 11- 13 45.8%
At this point I've noticed something that I used to notice on ICCup occasionally: my games aren't as satisfying because right after the games I'm usually thinking one of the following:
"That guy was legitimately better than me, and I got stomped."
"That guy was pretty much a noob. Of course I won."
I'm not really getting much satisfaction from winning because the people I beat make such obvious mistakes, where it really just would have been embarrassing to lose to them. OTOH, when I lose it's actually to someone who I think "if we played again, he would probably beat me again, because he's better." It's much less likely to be some bullshit strat that only works once, which is good I guess.
In order to improve from here (and once again gain satisfaction from winning), I'm going to have to put in a lot more effort to refine my play, just as the people who beat me have. I'm not sure if I'm willing to put in that much effort.
So, I gave up my old build, and I've been practicing 14/14 or hatch first, map dependent. My 14/14 games have gone pretty mediocre, mostly because everyone I play against has much more experience in 14/14 vs 14/14 than I do. My banelings get caught morphing, and I'm much more likely to lose several lings to a baneling while I'm not paying attention. The couple games where I opened hatch first went okay though, but at this time I'm just in a "try some stuff out" mode to learn more about the matchup. Right now, my heart is leaning toward hatch first.
Q:When do you guys scout (or do you even scout) in ZvZ when you open 14/14? How about if you open hatch first?
Even though I don't run into many Terran players on ladder, I've definitely played this matchup the most against my practice partner. The thing is, he has a style that is much different to that of the ladder Terrans that I run into. Ladder Terrans do a lot of 2rax openings, and my practice partner used to as well, and I got comfortable with them to the point where he just stopped because it wasn't worth it. But I got a bit rusty against 2rax since then, cutting a few too many corners in favor of macro.
Ladder Terrans also love cloaked banshees, which always mess me up.
Q:How do you deal with cloaked banshees? I'm fine with queens, I just need a good way to detect. Do you get a quick enough lair? Do you get spores? Because spores only protect themselves. I've been getting a late gas in favor of pumping drones hard, and spores just aren't working for me. Am I supposed to build 3 spores each at my main and nat just to detect and keep the banshees away? That seems like a win for the Terran already.
So I've been trying new things in this matchup, and it's been going okay-ish. First, I've given up on getting mutas before roach, because it's just too easy to lose to a timing attack, or at least get deflected without doing very much damage against better players. Second, I've been going hatch first and just pulling a drone or two if I have to to keep cannon rushes from working. The overpool build I was doing just wasn't strong enough against macro tosses who didn't suck. So it's either hatch first or speedling expand. I'm still having trouble against FE tosses who take a quick third though. I'm not sure how to deny it short of having a sizable army already in the making when I scout it. There's a very small timing window for me to get an attack force across the map before there are cannons/ff/a couple warp-in rounds off of 6 gates to hold it off. At that time I'm usually saturating my own third. But again, I think that's because of my weak opening I was using at the time.
That said, at this time, a good percentage of my ZvP wins are still coming from players who do some sort of one-base shenanigans (dt, vr-phoenix, 4gate with late [or no] expo, one base blink stalker, etc.), which pretty much never worked on me and never will.
Questions, comments, and constructive criticism welcome.
edit: how cool is it that ZeNEX is streaming their ladder games now? I watched a bunch of Puzzle and Coca yesterday, and wow Korean's are aggressive!